Evidence mounts against Lindbergh kidnaping suspect

NEW YORK, Sept. 25, 1934 (UP) -- A challenging series of claims and counter-claims-including a statement that "final proof" had been found irrevocably linking Bruno R. Hauptmann to the Lindbergh kidnaping-marked rapid developments today in police and Grand Jury investigation of the crime.

District Attorney Samuel Foley announced that the case was ironclad as a result of discovery of new evidence in Hauptmann's home. The evidence was said to be a board on which was scrawled the address of Dr. J. F. (Jafsie) Condon, negotiator in payment of the Lindbergh ransom. The board was ripped by detectives from a closet. The board also contained serial numbers of the ransom, it was said.


"The case has been completely broken in view of the evidence that we have," Foley announced, in striking contrast to the claims of Defense Attorney J. M. Fawcett that he had substantial evidence to support Hauptmann's alibi on the night of the kidnaping.


The surprising discovery of the address of Dr. Condon in Hauptmann's home came as a dramatic incident in a series of developments during the day, when the Bronx County Grand Jury heard more witnesses, including Col Henry Beckinridge, Lindbergh's attorney, in its examination of extortion charges against the prisoner.

Meanwhile, it was rumored without confirmation that New Jersey might speed up its effort to remove Hauptmann to make that state to face kidnaping and murder charges as a result of half a dozen new leads which investigators were running down today.

"Our case is getting stronger and stronger as the evidence develops," Gov. Harry A. Moore said.

The governor has discussed with officials the advisability of lodging Hauptmann in the death house of Trenton prison in event he is extradited, he said. Such a move would forestall possible public demonstrations, it was said.

Some of these leads were presented to the Grand Jury-which tomorrow will hear Col. Lindbergh, who is en route here by plane-while others developed so quickly that Foley at one time was hurriedly called from the jury room to confer with detectives.

This occurred when the address was found scribbled in Hauptmann's home. Detectives sped back to the Courthouse with the board and Foley hurried to his office, where Hauptmann already had been brought for another session of questioning.


Later, in announcing the discovery, Foley said that Hauptmann explained the scribbled address by saying that he was merely interested in the Lindbergh case.

Hauptmann also today reiterated his innocence and appealed to "you people and to German Americans to believe me and try to help me." His statement was made through his attorney.

"I wish to say to you people and German Americans that I hope they will believe my statements and help me," Hauptmann said. "Seeing my wife and baby made me feel better."

"I hope the truth will be had soon. I always have been a good father and husband. I hope I get cleared soon."

Mrs. Hauptmann said:

"Today I am very happy because District Attorney Foley has again given me a chance to have my husband see our baby."

Other developments:

1: The chief of police at Savannah, Ga., had announced that Hauptmann had been identified as a man who used Tybes Island, near Savannah, in 1932 and 1933 possibly as a "refugee" after the kidnaping. Mrs. Hauptmann and Hans Mueller, a nephew, also were at the island.

2: A detective carried into the Grand Jury room a long piece of lumber, wrapped in a blanket. It was believed to be part of the kidnap ladder.


3: Eight pairs of shoes in a black bag were locked up under guard at District Attorney Samuel Foley's office. They were taken from the Hauptmann home and were said to be similar to foot prints found outside the Lindbergh home and at the ransom scene.

4: A shoe box was presented to the Grand Jury to support charges that Hauptmann passed the ransom money. He said he discovered it among a dead friend's belongings. The shoes, purchased with a $20 gold ransom certificate, were bought by Hauptmann early this month.

5: Hauptmann, appearing fresh and rested, was taken from jail to Foley's office for further questioning.

Fawcett announced that he was convinced that Hauptmann was innocent of connection with the case, which was a more positive statement than he had previously made in behalf of his client. He said he had questioned the prisoner on all details and knew he was telling the truth because his private investigators had checked various angles.

These investigations included a check on Hauptmann's alibi for the night of the kidnaping, which was that he called for his wife at a bakery in the Bronx.

Col. Henry Breckinridge, attorney for Col. Charles A. Lindbergh, and Albert Osborn Sr., expert who identified Hauptmann's writing as similar to the kidnaper's scrawl, were among the first to appear at the Grand Jury room.


The fact that Lindbergh saw a second man at the ransom payment and the previously known fact that the ransom negotiator, Dr. J. F. (Jafsie) Condon, was instructed by a woman, accompanied by a man, as he approached the scene, strengthened the belief that several persons were involved in the crime.

Significance also was given today to a cheap white handkerchief which the man Lindbergh saw at the ransom scene dropped in the street. The handkerchief, recovered by detectives, was traced to a Bronx five-and-ten store.

In addition to Breckinridge and Osborn, those appearing at the Grand Jury room included Mrs. Pauline Rauch, landlady of the Hauptmanns; several employees of J. P. Morgan & Co., who recorded the serial numbers of the ransom bills; Detective William Wallace; Gregory Coleman, assistant city editor of the Bronx Home News; Salvatore Levaeara, a green grocer, who said Hauptmann tried to pass a gold certificate at his store, and Camilio Aiello, fruit and vegetable dealer, who had the same experience.

It was disclosed that the evidence being presented to the Grand Jury today included a black tin box supposed to have contained securities held by Hauptmann; the actual kidnap and ransom notes; the ransom money recovered from the Hauptmann garage and bills allegedly passed by Hauptmann.


Police were understood to be planning to X-ray Hauptmann's leg and ankle to determine if he had been injured, possibly when the ladder used by the kidnapper broke. They also were expected to check his carpenter tools against the niches and grooves in the kidnap ladder in an effort to determine whether the tools were used in its construction.

Deputy Inspector Henry Bruckman, chief of Bronx detectives, carried a piece of timber, about 10 feet long, into the Grand Jury room. It was wrapped in a heavy blanket and resembled the side of a ladder. The lumber used in construction of the kidnapping ladder, it was recalled, was traced to a Bronx lumber yard.

Corp. William Horn of the New Jersey state police also testified.

In Washington it was learned that Hauptmann's footprints came close to matching those found under the window of the Lindbergh nursery the night the baby was stolen.

Hauptmann's fingerprints, rushed to Trenton, N. J., from New York, were closely studied by state police experts there. Col H. Norman Schwarzkopf, head of the department, said they merely sought to determine Hauptmann's criminal record.

The fingerprints have been of no use to New Jersey authorities seeking an answer to the mystery, Col. Schwarzkopf announced later today.


"There were no fingerprints of any kind, anywhere in the nursery of the Lindbergh home," Schwarzkopf said, adding that the prompt transmission of Hauptmann's prints to New Jersey was "the usual police procedure."

The police head disclosed that none of the ransom money has "turned up" since Hauptmann's arrest last Thursday.

"Unquestionably a number of bills are still in circulation and they are likely to show up for the next year or so," he added.

Schwarzkopf was questioned concerning his constant references to "kidnapers."

"Only one kidnaper has been caught," he replied laconically, "and you may draw your own inferences from that."

Decision on the $25,000 reward money offered by the state for apprehension of the kidnaper or kidnapers will not be made until Hauptmann is tried here, Schwarzkopf said.

It was rumored that $10,000 each would be give to Walter Lyle, gas station manager who reported to police when Hauptmann gave him one of the $10 ransom notes, and Walter Perrone, taxicab driver who identified Hauptmann as the man who gave him a note for Dr. John F. Condon, "Jafsie" of the case. Disposition of the remainder will be made later, according to current reports.

Hauptmann's diary and account books found in a new search of his home, revealed what one official said were clews of "great importance." Twenty-five detectives were assigned to running them down. Their nature was not made public.


The diary and account books of Hauptmann contained dozens of names of both men and women acquaintances. It was not disclosed whether any entry in the diary related to the kidnaping. But Police Inspector John A. Lyons attached the greatest importance to the find. The names of Hauptmann's friends and associates was considered of especial importance in view of hints from the Department of Justice in Washington that they sought a relative or close friend as an accomplice in the actual kidnaping.

Although Fisch was found to have been penniless when he left New York and died in Germany, his name continued to bob up. Detectives found his safety deposit box here empty and discovered he slept in parks the summer after the kidnaping, at the same time that Hauptmann was playing the stock market and taking expensive hunting trips and his wife was visiting in Germany. Department of Justice agents said, however, that Fisch was not exonerated.

Both Hauptmann and his wife continued to blame the dead man for all their troubles.

Detectives discovered that in the summer of 1932 (the ransom was paid in April, 1932) and in 1933 the Hauptmanns made four trips to California, Florida and Maine in addition to the wife's European trip. Hauptmann, who had been poor previously, also financed trips to Germany for several friends. His Wall Street dealings were through two brokerage houses.


Meanwhile, in Trenton, Attorney General David T. Wilentz worked on the evidence with which New Jersey will seek Hauptmann's extradition and which later it will present against him in an effort to prove him responsible for the murder and kidnaping. New Jersey won't be ready to move until next week.

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